My Book of Ten Fishes

- By Rosalie G. Mendel
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Do you know why I am called a "Star Fish?" It is because I am shaped like a star. I am the star of the sea. My five large, thick arms point in different directions. On the end of each one is a red spot. Those are my eyes. My body is covered with little spine-like prickles. On the under side of my body, near the center, is my mouth.
My favorite foods are oysters and clams. When I want my dinner I bend my arms, or rays, to form a cup. I catch food with the hundreds of little suckers that are on the under side of my body.
Did you ever go fishing? Did you ever catch a Salmon? I doubt it. It takes a mighty sharp fisherman to catch me. I am called "the king of the fresh water fish." I am the most valuable and delicate of all fish. My flavor is excellent and I have few troublesome bones.
My home is in the sea. But in the autumn of the year I leave it and travel to the river where I was born. There I deposit eggs in the shallow creeks. The eggs remain there until the next spring. These children remain for two years in the river. Then, in the third spring, they seek the cool waters of the sea.
Often, on my journey from the sea to my birthplace, I come to roaring waterfalls. To reach the top of these is hard and dangerous. But I am never afraid. I curl my body so that my tail almost reaches my mouth. Then I give an upward spring. Sometimes I fail, but if I do I try again. Did you ever see a picture of a "salmon leap?"
You have eaten lobsters, haven't you? If not, I am sorry for you, because I am considered a very fine-tasting sea food. When a lobster is brought to the dinner table it is a bright red. But when it swims in the ocean, before it is boiled, its shell is very dark, almost black.
Mother Nature furnished me with a hard shell made of lime. This protects my soft body from my enemies. This shell fits me as tightly as your Sunday kid glove fits you. When my body grows too large for it, I get ready for a new one. I hide myself from everyone. I stop eating and so get thinner. My body shrinks away from my shell. It splits and comes off. Then a new one at once begins to cover me. At first it is very soft, but it soon gets as hard as my other one. The old shell comes off in one piece. If you saw it lying on the sand you would think it a live lobster.
Snap! Snap! See my two pinchers! Look out or I might bite you! Snap! Snap!

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Word Lists:

Lobster : a large marine crustacean with a cylindrical body, stalked eyes, and the first of its five pairs of limbs modified as pincers.

Prickle : a short, slender, sharp-pointed outgrowth on the bark or epidermis of a plant; a small thorn

Troublesome : causing difficulty or annoyance

Creek : a stream, brook, or minor tributary of a river.

Shallow : of little depth

Split : break or cause to break forcibly into parts, especially into halves or along the grain

Autumn : the third season of the year, when crops and fruits are gathered and leaves fall, in the northern hemisphere from September to November and in the southern hemisphere from March to May

Shrink : become or make smaller in size or amount

Deposit : a sum of money placed or kept in a bank account, usually to gain interest


Additional Information:

Rating: A

Words: 497

Unique Words : 225

Sentences : 53

Reading Time : 2:12

Noun : 120

Conjunction : 42

Adverb : 28

Interjection : 2

Adjective : 39

Pronoun : 82

Verb : 71

Preposition : 51

Letter Count : 1,825

Sentiment : Positive

Tone : Conversational

Difficult Words : 62

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